Many sporting events and competitions have been cancelled or postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic – but the 41st Willaston World Worm Charming Championship went ahead as planned.
Due to social restrictions those taking part in the annual South Cheshire event participated in their own gardens and live-streamed their efforts on Zoom.
The event – which took place on Saturday afternoon – saw teams given 30 minutes to charm and collect as many worms as possible from their 2×2 metre plot.
Two ‘wormers’ were allowed on the plot at any time – but people could swap out.
To charm the worms techniques included waggling a garden fork, tapping a garden fork to cause vibrations in the ground, playing music, jumping up and down, and bouncing a ball.
The team with the most charmed worms were the Brookshaw family from Willaston with an impressive 155 worms. They competed with their daughters Emma, aged 11, and Olivia, aged eight, under the team name ‘The Wizarding Worms’.
The best decorated plot was won by ‘Team Benbow’. There was also a worm colouring-in competition to promote the event, for age categories ages seven & under and eight & older, with the artwork poster drawn by local illustrator, artist and card designer Hannah Morgan.
The competition was won by Isabelle aged seven and Milly aged 10, both from Willaston Primary Academy.
Among those taking part was Kieran Mullan, MP for Crewe and Nantwich, who participated under the team name ‘The Parliament Charmers’.
Kath Burdett, Secretary, Friends of Willaston School said: “We know that so many people enjoy this annual event, so we didn’t want to break the tradition even though social distancing measure meant we couldn’t run it as we normally would. We hope everyone who took part had a great time and congratulations to the winners.”
The event was free to enter with donations to the Friends of Willaston School Association – which organises the annual event – via a JustGiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/WormCharming2020 . All funds raised will be used towards a Willaston Wellbeing Project at Willaston Primary Academy.